Development aid falls during global recession

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development released a news report outlining several trends and statistics in developmental aid flows from OECD countries to developing nations. Aid flows have been steadily increasing since 1997 until it dipped by 2.7% in 2011 compared to the previous year in real terms. OECD Development Assistance Committee (DAC) Chairman Brian Atwood stated that the decrease in aid, which resulted from the economic crisis, reflected the “growing awareness that global challenges… cannot be resolved without development progress.”

The largest donor in 2011 was the United States, followed by Germany, the United Kingdom, France, and Japan. Sweden, Norway, and Luxembourg topped the ranking in net official development assistance as a percentage of GNI; they, along with Denmark and the Netherlands, were the only states to “exceed the United Nations’ ODA target of 0.7% of GNI.  The United States sits at fifth from last at 0.2%, a 0.01% decrease from 2010. However, U.S. bilateral ODA to Africa rose 17.4% and ODA to Least Developed Countries increased 6.9%.

The OECD’s predictions for the years 2012 to 2015 give a conservative outlook, suggesting relatively few changes in current aid trends. The report explains that it may take “several years from the onset of a recession for the full impact to be felt on aid flows,” partly because some aid flows through international organizations and thus is not immediately received. In the upcoming years of tight budgets, DAC countries may focus more on the Recommendation on Good Pledging Practice, which seeks to improve aid “accountability and transparency.”


Posted by: Pokyee Yu

Sources: The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development

Photo Credit: The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development


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